Welcome! I’m Julia Mullins, and this collection of recipes, travel tales, and other vegan tidbits is updated periodically. Please subscribe for emailed updates, and follow on Facebook!

What’s in a name?

While brushing up on our Spanish before a trip, my husband and I learned the phrase “barriga llena, corazón contento.” This phrase translates to “full belly, happy heart” and a quick Google search taught us a bit more about this Colombian saying. Beyond just being full and happy after a good meal, this means all is well and your basic needs are fulfilled.

Sure, we all have some hard days, but as long as we have a roof over our head, clothes on our back, and bountiful vegan cuisine to share with loved ones at every meal, everything is going to be just fine.

Why vegan?

I became a vegetarian in 1998, after eating mostly pasta for as long as I can remember. My parents said it was okay if I didn’t want to eat meat, but I’d have to get better about having balanced meals like other “vegetarians.” That summer was the first time I put any thought into what people eat and why, and the first time I’d ever (knowingly) had a label. I initially just didn’t like the taste of meat, but as I thought more about it, and as more time passed, I took the “friends, not food” approach, as the sharks in Finding Nemo would say.

After more than a decade of being a vegetarian, I started making the connection between my addiction to cheese and my chronically stuffy nose. In addition, I began learning about the dairy industry, and connecting the dots. That cheese I used to enjoy was only possible because some baby calf wasn’t getting his mother’s milk. That made it much easier to quit! Without dairy, my allergies and asthma improved!

A few years ago, I met my husband, and together, we continued learning about plant-based diets, and the impact our food choices made on the environment and animals. We can certainly sleep better at night knowing that our colorful dinners and vegan lifestyle are having a smaller footprint on the world.

Why write a blog?

Many people have expressed how hard it seems to make the change to a plant-based diet. The blog is a way to share some of my personal recipes and stories to show that not everything is perfect. For every culinary masterpiece, there’s bound to be a kitchen catastrophe, and plenty of meals along that spectrum. More importantly, it can be fun, cost-effective, healthy, and deliciously rewarding when you get cookin’. Due to other dietary considerations, I end up tweaking every recipe I find. I’ve learned a lot along the way, and love sharing this knowledge.

I’m passionate about sharing what I know so that more people can benefit from plant-based living. There are plenty of vegan health coaches and lifestyle consultants with blogs, and if you’ve stumbled upon this one, know that it’s with the animals, the planet, and your health in mind.

Enjoy the recipes, travel tips, and other tidbits!

May you always have a full belly, and happy heart.